[sdiy] Soldering races (was something else)

cheater cheater cheater00social at gmail.com
Thu Jun 9 03:00:11 CEST 2022

Retrieving an SMD part from a box takes maybe 2 seconds - so you could
save ages there.

With hot air, the solder is flowing at all times, so you just need to
put the thing down and you're done.

Of course, that's all theory, and in practice, it's not.

On Thu, Jun 2, 2022 at 5:10 AM David G Dixon via Synth-diy
<synth-diy at synth-diy.org> wrote:
> Hey Team,
> You may remember that I started a subthread about soldering through-hole vs SMD.  Well, today I decided to actually time myself with a stopwatch.
> I timed two different sets of through-hole resistors.
> The first set was 60 of all one value (10k) that I buy in boxes of 5000 on tape, so I can bend and cut them very quickly.  My system is as follows:
> 1) I cut 5 strips of 12 resistors each from the box.
> 2) I bend the strips in half so that the resistors are close packed (they come spaced out).
> 3) I use long straight needle-nose pliers to bend all 12 resistors at once, about 2 mm from the resistor body on both sides.  This gives 0.4" lead spacing.
> 4) I cut all of the leads (in groups of 4) so that about 1 cm remains on each side.
> 5) I stuff all of the resistors, being careful to orient them all in the same direction.
> 6) I solder them all.
> 7) I snip them all.
> 8) I inspect against a strong light.
> The entire process for those 60 resistors (on two different PCBs) took 17:40.  That's about 18 seconds per resistor.  This is a little longer than I was expecting, but I am soldering a little slower these days.  It seems that I'm having a little bit of a problem getting the solder to flow, so each joint takes maybe one second longer than it should.  I think my (Chinese) solder skimped a little on the flux.
> The second set was 59 of all different values, from two different boxes containing 59 different little bags in order as they go on the PCBs -- one box of 23 bags for a 12-stage Dome filter, and one box of 36 bags for an 18-stage Dome filter (one of the resistors on the 12-stage filter is actually 0 ohms, so that's why there are 1 fewer resistors).  My system here is as follows:
> 1) I take the bag out of the box, tease out one resistor, put it between my lips, reseal and replace the bag.
> 2) I grab the resistor body between my left thumb and forefinger and bend the leads with my right thumb and forefinger.  This gives 0.4" lead spacing.
> 3) I cut the leads to 1 cm on each side and set down the resistor on my bench in order.
> Steps 1 to 3 are repeated as needed to get all the resistors needed for one row of the PCB (there are two rows on each PCB -- rows of 12, 11, 18 and 18 resistors).
> Then, steps 5 through 8 from above are done once for each PCB.
> The entire process for those 59 resistors took 34:45.  That's about 35 seconds per resistor.
> So, obviously, the biggest time-suck of through-hole parts is actually retrieving the parts from their bags.  I believe that the stuffing, soldering, snipping and inspecting only took about 13 minutes for both sets (although I must confess that I didn't time those steps separately).
> I'd like to conclude this post by saying that I do not enjoy "racing against the clock" as I did today -- I didn't really work faster than I normally would, but I was a bit more relentless than usual.  I like to take a more leisurely time, since this is a relaxing pastime for me.  I should also mention that I listened to one of my favorite pieces of music while doing this challenge: Messiaen's organ cycle "Meditations sur le mystere de la sainte trinite," and that made the time pass very quickly.  Highly recommended listening -- I prefer the Jennifer Bate set on the Beauvais Cathedral organ on Unicorn-Kanchana, but the Olivier Latry set on the Notre Dame organ on Deutsche Grammaphon is also excellent, but perhaps a little harsher, and maybe a tad too fast in places.
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